A soldier had been out scouting the area for enemies. On his way home he stopped at a humble cottage and asked for shelter. An older couple answered the door, took pity on him and allowed him to stay the night. The stranger was exhausted and retired as soon as he was shown his room. The mistress of the home then locked up all of her valuables in case this man was a thief. However, before she fell asleep, she heard speaking in the next room. She listened closer and heard a prayer offered in gentle yet solemn tones. It was the stranger praying for his country, for the soldiers who were fighting for the noble cause. The woman was ashamed of her suspicious fears. She got up and put the key back in the cupboard door and slept peacefully and soundly through the night. The next morning, the stranger could not stay. He offered to pay for his night’s lodging, but the old couple refused. Then, said the guest, ‘you deserve to know who I am, who you have entertained and treated so nobly. I am General Washington.’
What made the old woman distrust the stranger? What changed the old woman’s perception?